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Audi Captures USPA National 20-Goal Tournament; Nic Roldan Named MVP; Fall Season Ends Saturday With Doubleheader

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Audi Captures USPA National 20-Goal Tournament; Nic Roldan Named MVP; Fall Season Ends Saturday With Doubleheader
WELLINGTON, Fla., November 28, 2019---In one of the most remarkable comebacks in club history, Audi won the USPA National 20-Goal Tournament Wednesday at Grand Champions Polo Club.

USPA National 20-Goal champion Audi players Sugar Erskine, Marc Ganzi, Brandon Phillips and Nic Roldan.



Down 7-1 early in the third chukker, Audi (Marc Ganzi, 2, Sugar Erskine, 6, Nic Roldan, 8, Brandon Phillips, 4) rallied for a hardfought 11-10 victory over Sebucan (Santos Bollini, 1, Jason Crowder, 6, Kris Kampsen, 6, Tommy Biddle, 5).

It was the fourth USPA National 20-Goal Tournament title for Audi in tournament history. Audi finished the tournament undefeated at 3-0. Sebucan had a 1-1 record.

Sebucan's Kris Kampsen hits away as teammate Tommy Biddle tries to take
 Sugar Erskine out of the play.

Nic Roldan was named Most Valuable Player after scoring a game-high six goals and sparking his team's comeback. It was Roldan's fifth USPA National 20-Goal title.

"You just watched a really, good, tough game, probably the toughest game of the season," Roldan said.

The season comes to a close at Grand Champions on Saturday with the Legends of Polo Carlos Gracida Memorial at 1 p.m. and International Cup pitting GCPC-USA against France at 3 p.m. Gates open 12:30 p.m. and tickets are still available.

Nic Roldan of Audi reaches to hook Jason Crowder of Sebucan.

On a gorgeous day for polo in front of a good local crowd and USPA Polo Network worldwide audience, Sebucan dominated Audi the first two chukkers jumping out to a 5-0 shut out.

Audi didn't score its first goal until the 2:36 mark in the second chukker on Phillips' 40-yard penalty conversion. The teams tied 1-1 in the second chukker with Sebucan still leading, 6-1.

Audi regained its composure in the third chukker with a 3-1 advantage behind two goals by Roldan and one by Phillips to trail 7-4 at the half.

Jason Crowder of Sebucan goes for the big neck shot downfield.

Audi scored four unanswered points in the third chukker and early in the fourth before Sebucan was able to score on Kampsen's 40-yard penalty conversion.

Another 3-1 fourth chukker with two penalty conversions from Phillips and goal from Erskine and Audi was right back in the game, trailing 8-7.

"We came out with a plan that didn't work and they absolutely capitalized on it," Roldan said. "We just couldn't get anything done and then we changed it up and it helped. We inched back and forth, chukker by chukker.

Marc Ganzi of Audi reaches to hook Kris Kampsen of Sebucan.

"We changed it up by putting Marc in the back and put Sugar in the front," Roldan said. "It helped out a lot by putting pressure on them. That changed helped a lot and we started scoring goals."

Audi scored another four unanswered goals in the fourth and fifth chukkers and for the first time shared the lead, 8-8, on Roldan's tap-in goal with 1:23 left in the fifth.

Audi continued to control the momentum in the sixth chukker. Roldan scored back-to-back goals for a 10-8 lead. Biddle's 40-yard penalty conversion cut the lead to one with 4:35 left. A minute later, Kampsen converted a 60-yard penalty shot to tie the game 10-10 at 3:03.

Nic Roldan of Audi tries to hit past Tommy Biddle of Sebucan.

With 2:11 left, Sebucan had an opportunity with a penalty shot but Audi stopped it just short of the goal. Roldan came back to score with 1:44 remaining despite a good defensive effort from Kampsen. Crowder won the next throw-in but Erskine came up with a clutch steal and penalty against Sebucan ended the game.

"We came out trying to play to win," Kampsen said. "We had all the chances. I had a 60 that was straight but ankle-high and those guys ended up stopping it in the goal mouth. We fight them and fight them and they end up getting a foul out of us at the end. Just bad luck.

"Hey, we tried. We had the shots and still had a run to tie it at the end. It was fun to watch. This has been one of the most intense 20-goals I have played here at Grand Champions. It's been an awesome season."

Brandon Phillips of Audi goes to hook Santos Bollini of Sebucan.

Team patron Pablo Pulido, who had family commitments, was replaced by 20-year-old Santos (Tato) Bollini in the lineup.

"We were upset Pablo couldn't be here but I told him we were going to try to win it for him," Kampsen said. "Tato did a great job coming in, not knowing the horses. He played amazing. We had so much fun. He did everything we asked him. He played his ass off. When you needed a run out of him he gave it to us and put those guys on their backs. It was a huge help to us."

In addition to Roldan's six goals, Phillips had four goals and Erskine added one.

Sugar Erskine of Audi works the ball out of the air with Kris Kampsen of Sebucan defending.

"Audi is a great organization," Roldan said. "I have been playing the fall season for a long time and this is by far the hardest season I've had. The teams have all been competitive, the fields been great and weather amazing. Everyone's caliber of horses has improved incredibly so it's been tough. It was a good win for the organization."

The 18-goal rated Sebucan picked up two goals on handicap. Kampsen had three goals, Crowder and Biddle each had two goals and Bollini had one.

Nic Roldan of Audi works the ball out of a crowd.

Gemma, a 7-year-old mare, played by Ganzi in the sixth chukker, bred by six-time Argentine Open winner Horatio Heguy and owned by Halo Polo/Santa Rita Polo Farm, was Best Playing Pony.

In the semifinals, Sebucan advanced into the final with an 11-10 win over Aspen Valley (Grant Ganzi, 3, Juancito Bollini, 4, Horacio Heguy, 6, Jeff Blake, 6). Audi advanced with a 14-10 win over France (Louis Jarrige, 3, Julien Reynes, 4, Edouard Pan, 4, Pierre Henri Ngoumou, 6).

The National Twenty Goal was first played at the Royal Palm Polo Club in Boca Raton in 2007. Won by Houston-based team BTA (Chrys Beal, Mariano Gonzalez, Francisco Lanusse, Santiago Trotz) in a narrow victory over Audi 13-12, the trophy then went on hiatus until 2011. Grand Champions resurrected the tournament and it has been played there ever since.

Jason Crowder of Sebucan reaches for the ball with Brandon Phillips of Audi defending.

Grand Champions closed out a successful fall high and medium goal season.

Newport (Gene Goldstein, Grant Ganzi,  Juancito Bollini, Nic Roldan) made club history winning the first-ever Wellington Open high goal tournament of the fall season.  

The winners of the first five 2019 medium goal fall tournaments at Grand Champions were: Casablanca (Marc Ganzi, Grant Ganzi, Nic Roldan, Pierre Henri Ngoumou), Pedro Morrison Memorial; Newport (Gene Goldstein, Jason Crowder, Kris Kampsen, Juan Bollini), Fall Plates Tournament; Sebucan (Santos Bollini, Pablo Pulido, Nic Roldan, Kris Kampsen), Fall Classic; Flexjet (Melissa Ganzi, Kris Kampsen, Pablo Spinacci, Juan Bollini), Tackeria Invitational; and Casablanca (Grant Ganzi, Juancito Bollini, Brandon Phillips, Jason Crowder), US Trust Cup. The Polo Gear Challenge final was postponed by rain.

Santos Bollini of Sebucan goes to hook Nic Roldan of Audi.

During the 2019 fall season, the nation's largest and busiest polo club, hosts both medium and high goal polo including six medium goal and two 20-goal. It is highlighted by the International Cup featuring GCPC-USA against France and  Legends of Polo Carlos Gracida Memorial.
 
The well-organized fall tournaments attract players from all over the United States and world including Argentina, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Ecuador, England, France, India, Mexico, New Zealand, Nigeria, Uruguay, Switzerland, Nigeria and South Africa.

Best Playing Pony Gemma, played by Marc Ganzi in the sixth chukker with legendary Horacio Heguy and WPL Commissioner Dale Smicklas.

The fall season served as a tuneup for the winter season for players and green horses. The winter season will feature the second season of the highly-successful 26-goal World Polo League at Grand Champions and Valiente Polo Farm with the best polo players in the world.

The club takes pride in teaching and sharing the exciting sport of polo with anyone interested in learning. Grand Champions' sister club Aspen Valley Polo Club is coming off its most successful and historical summer season.

Popular singer Tom Blake gets the final kicked off with the National Anthem.

Grand Champions Polo Club and Santa Rita Polo Farm cater to men, women and youth polo players at all levels. Its' expert staff can customize a complete playing experience including horses, pros and certified umpires in addition to lessons and practice sessions as part of its' Polo On Demand program at the turnkey facility.

The Polo School, a 501c3 organization and stand-alone USPA club, is dedicated to teaching polo to all ages, particularly grass roots youth. Its' mission is to provide individuals opportunities in polo at every economic and ability level. Scholarships are available. The Polo School, a stand-alone USPA club, operates in Wellington January through May and September through November.  The Morrison family, after enjoying the Pedro Morrison Memorial with family and friends, are the most recent contributors of $5,000 to The Polo School. For more information on the Fall Leagues or Polo School contact Juan Bollini at  561-346-1099.

Grand Champions awards table for the USPA National 20-Goal Tournament.
Photos by Grand Champions Polo Club

2019 Grand Champions Fall Schedule



Nov. 30 1 p.m.
Legends of Polo Carlos Gracida Memorial

Nov. 30 3 p.m.
2019 International Cup, GCPC-USA vs. France

UNITED STATES POLO ASSOCIATION

The United States Polo Association® was organized and exists for the purposes of promoting thegame of polo, coordinating the activities of its member clubs and registered players, arranging and supervising polo tournaments, competitions, and games and providing rules, handicaps, and conditions for those tournaments, competitions, and games including the safety and welfare of participants and mounts.


THE POLO SCHOOL 

The Polo School at Grand Champions and Director of Operations Juan Bollini are dedicated to teaching polo to all ages, particularly grass roots youth. The school's mission is to provide individuals opportunities in polo. The Polo School operates in Wellington January through May and September through November. For lessons contact Juan Bollini at 561-346-1099. 


Chukker TV will live-streame the entire fall polo schedule. ChukkerTV, featuring cutting-edge technology, was the first to introduce state-of-the-art live streaming technology and instant replay in January, 2014 at Grand Champions Polo Club. For advertising opportunities on ChukkerTV please contact Mike Ferreira at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


GRAND CHAMPIONS POLO CLUB

WHERE: 13444 Southfields Road, on the corner of South Shore Boulevard and Lake Worth Road, Wellington, 33414.

DIRECTOR OF POLO: Juan Olivera, 561-644-5050, juan.olivera@gcpolo.com; hotline  561-644-5050.

INFORMATION: For spectators, there are great field side views for tournament action and also the Grand Champions Polo Club Boutique. The club is home base for pro teams Audi and Flexjet. Everyone is welcome to watch every level of polo in a relaxed atmosphere with food and refreshments during the featured games of the winter, spring and fall tournament seasons and other special events. Admission is free except for some special events.

STAY CONNECTED:
ChukkerTV, 13444 Southfields Road, Wellington, FL 33414
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